Robert Doar

Commissioner, New York City Human Resources Administration (HRA)

Robert Doar was appointed commissioner of the New York City Human Resources Administration (HRA) in January 2007 by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg after a decade of leadership at New York State’s social services agency. Mr. Doar has dedicated his career to social services by creating and implementing policies for the most vulnerable people in New York State.

As chief executive of the largest local social services agency in the country, with a staff of 14,000 and a budget of more than $8 billion, Mr. Doar administers more than 12 major public assistance programs. Serving nearly three million New Yorkers, these programs include food assistance, temporary cash assistance, public health insurance, home care for the elderly and disabled, services that assist people living with HIV/AIDS, domestic violence assistance, energy assistance, child support services, adult protective services, among others. His strong “work first” emphasis has seen the placement of nearly 350,000 individuals into employment since his appointment. He has successfully promoted the expansion of programs that have helped people remain out of poverty including food stamp benefits and Medicaid and has been a main principal in promoting Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's Earned Income Tax Credit efforts. During Mr. Doar's tenure, New York City children have the lowest uninsured rate of the eight largest U.S. cities.

Mr. Doar is also a leading advocate in efforts to combat fraud and abuse, and to pursue revenue reimbursements in government assistance programs. Under his leadership, HRA has recovered a total of more than $500 million and achieved more than $4 billion in cost avoidance and savings. He has also worked to promote responsible fatherhood, both through increased efforts in the collection of child support payments, and by creating programs like NYC DADS, which encourage fathers to take an active role in their children's emotional lives.

Mr. Doar’s commitment to ensuring young men of color have more involvement with their children began in his previous positions with the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA). Under New York Governor George Pataki, Mr. Doar was appointed Deputy Commissioner in 1995 where he created initiatives for young dads and was responsible for child support collections soaring to more than $1 billion. In 2000, he became the agency's Executive Deputy Commissioner and was instrumental in making New York a national leader in welfare reform. It was under Mr. Doar's leadership as OTDA Commissioner from 2003 through 2006, that the successful reengineering of the state's welfare programs were strengthened through his “require work/reward work” philosophy.

Mr. Doar received his A.B. from Princeton University. He has been the recipient of the American Society for Public Administration’s New Public Administrator Award (2000), the Commissioner's Distinguished Service Award from the Administration for Children & Families, Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement, Department of Health & Human Services (2002), and the National Child Support Enforcement Association’s State Leader of the Year Award (2006).